According to Google I wasn't in SA - Hewitt

2015-02-17 20:09
Bob Hewitt (File: Sapa)

Bob Hewitt (File: Sapa)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Johannesburg - Australian-born former Grand Slam tennis champion Bob Hewitt had an alibi for the time period during which he allegedly raped Suellen Sheehan, the South Gauteng High Court in Johannesburg, sitting in Palm Ridge, heard on Tuesday.

Hewitt said he had done a Google search and found he had been in Paris or London around the time Sheehan alleged he raped her.

Terry Price, for Hewitt, recalled his client to the stand following testimony from Sheehan's parents.

While Sheehan could not provide the date when the alleged rape occurred, she testified that Hewitt raped her in his car before tennis practice just before her 13th birthday in June 1982.

Between 24 May and 4 July 1982, Hewitt said he had been commentating on the Wimbledon tennis tournament overseas. His co-anchor Jan Snyman could vouch for him, Hewitt said.

Hewitt is on trial for the rape of two of his former students, namely Theresa Tolken and Sheehan in the 1980s, and the sexual assault of a third, who may not be named, in the 1990s. He has pleaded not guilty. He gave tennis lessons to the girls.

On Tuesday, the court heard evidence from two journalists who interviewed Sheehan in 2011.

Shaun Gillham of the Weekend Post testified that Sheehan told her Hewitt sexually assaulted her when she was 9. Gillham no longer had the notes he took from the telephonic interview with Sheehan.

He reported that he had been informed that Hewitt had Alzheimer's disease. In an interview with Hewitt he did not question him about this. He said this point was kept in his story as it "added colour".

A second journalist, Charmaine Slater of the Bedfordview and Edenvale News, testified that Sheehan told her Hewitt raped her when she was 11.

After telling the court she exclusively relied on her notes to compile the article, it emerged that not all the quotes she used were in her notes. Slater said she relied on her notes and her memory.

Both journalists said Sheehan never contested the contents of the articles.

Misquoted

Testifying last week, Sheehan said she was sometimes misquoted by the media.

Her parents, Judy and Michael Sheehan, from whom she was estranged, testified on Tuesday.

Sheehan had said she tried to tell her parents of the rape, but her mother dismissed her claims.

Judy Sheehan denied any knowledge of the rape prior to reading about it in newspaper articles in 2011.

"If this had happened, this case would have happened some 30 odd years ago," she said.

She said their daughter physically and verbally abused them and had claimed to police that her father had raped her.

Sheehan had suggested she would lay sexual harassment complaints against a boss of hers who she was having trouble with, her mother told the court.

Judy Sheehan said their relationship collapsed after she and her husband cut off financial help to Sheehan when she turned 40.

They had disagreements about Sheehan's son Michael, now 21, whom Sheehan accused of taking drugs.

Michael said he had asked his daughter about the allegations concerning Hewitt. She told him Hewitt had looked down her breasts.

"I said it may have happened at 12, but you are 41 now. What can you do about it? Get over it," Michael Sheehan told the court.

Prosecutor Carina Coetzee said this could have prevented Sheehan from going into more detail about what had happened.

Read more on:    bob hewitt  |  johannesburg  |  crime

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
28 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

 
ADVERTORIAL
Competition regulation for a growing and inclusive economy

ADVERTORIAL: The Competition Commission of South Africa is conducting advocacy work in the South African automotive aftermarket industry and has gazetted a Draft Code of Conduct for public comment.

/News
 

How to open a beer bottle without an opener

Do the right thing and never be thirsty again…

 
 

You won't want to miss...

WATCH: Man films himself going down water slide upside down as things go very wrong…
WATCH: Conor McGregor: Notorious the trailer
Best date night restaurants in South Africa
WATCH: Ryan Reynolds offers fans a free tattoo in new Deadpool 2 teaser
Traffic Alerts
Traffic
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.